How to Display a Task ID that Won’t Change in MS Project

99 Tricks and Traps for Microsoft projectHow to Display a Task ID that Will Not Change in Microsoft Project

One frustrating part of using MS Project is that the Task ID is not unique and as new tasks are inserted then the ID changes.

The Unique ID field helps resolve this issue, which is often very important in dispute resolution. Each task is assigned a Unique ID when it is created. This number is not used again in the schedule, even if the task is deleted.

There are two other columns that may be used to edit and display relationships using the Unique ID:

  1. The Unique ID Predecessor, and
  2. The Unique ID Successor.

The Task Unique ID allows users to identify easily which activities have been added or deleted or when a revised schedule has been submitted.

On the other hand, if one wants to reset the Unique ID, or hide the addition or deletion of tasks, then create a new schedule, transfer the calendars, etc. with Organizer, and copy and paste all the tasks into the new schedule.

Note : There is also a unique Resource ID and a Resource Assignment Unique ID.

Hiding Task Information in Microsoft Project

Sometimes it is desirable to hide some information in a bar or cell about a specific task.

Hiding Bars in MS Project

To hide a bar:

  1. Open Task Information from the General tab, and
  2. Check the Hide task bar option.

Hiding Text in MS Project

To hide text in one or more cells:

  1. Select the cells,
  2. Select Format, Font… to open the Font form and make the Text color the same color as the Background, which is usually white.

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What Are Leads and Lags in Primavera P6 Version 8.2?

Project Planning and Control Using Oracle Primavera P6 - Version 8.2 EPPM WebUnderstanding Lags and Leads in Primavera P6 8.2

A Lag is a duration that is applied to a dependency to make the successor start or finish earlier or later.

  • A successor activity will start later when a positive Lag is assigned. Therefore, an activity requiring a 3-day delay between the finish of one activity and start of another will require a positive lag of 3 days.
  • Conversely, a lag may be negative when a new activity may be started before the predecessor activity is finished. This is called a Lead or Negative Lag.
  • Leads and Lags may be applied to any relationship type.
An example of a FS with positive lag:

positive lag in p6

positive lag in p6

An example of a FS with negative lag:
negative lag in p6

Here are some important points to understand about Lags in P6:

  • The lag duration is calculated on the lag as in Microsoft Project and other Primavera products. A lag is not assigned to one or both of the Predecessor and Successor activities as in Asta Powerproject.
  • Lags may be assigned one of four calendars from the Calendar for Scheduling Relationship lag drop down box in the General Schedule Options form. This form is opened by selecting Tools, Schedule… and clicking on the options tab.

The four Lag Calendar options are:

Ø  Predecessor Activity Calendar,

Ø  Successor Activity Calendar,

Ø  24-Hour Calendar, and

Ø  Project Default Calendar.

primavera p6 version 8-2 info button Lags are calculated by Primavera P3 and SureTrak software using the Predecessor Calendar. Microsoft Project 2003 to 2010 uses the Successor Calendar or may have an Elapsed Duration Lag. Earlier versions of Microsoft Project used the Project Calendar. Asta Powerproject assigns the lag to either or both the predecessor or successor thus allowing either the Predecessor or Successor Calendar to be selected for each relationship.
eh.com.au warning symbol You must be careful when using a lag to allow for delays such as curing concrete when the Lag Calendar is not a seven-day calendar. Because this type of activity lapses nonwork days, the activity could finish before Primavera calculated finish date.

You must be extremely careful when opening multiple projects when the Lag Calendar option is different for each project. This is because all the project options are changed permanently to be the same as the Default Project and therefore some of your projects may not calculate the same way as they did before opening the projects together. Please read the Multiple Project Scheduling chapter for more details on this topic.

Eastwood Harris Supplies Project Management Training Manuals, Project Management Training Presentations and Consulting on Primavera P6 and Microsoft Project 2010 across Australia.

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Formatting Bar Text and Colors in MS Project 2010

How to Format Bar Text in Microsoft Project

Text may be placed on all bars using the Format, Bar… form or selected bars using the Format, Bar Styles… form.

Note: The length of the Bar Chart may be reduced by placing the text on top of the bar instead of the end:

formatting bar text in ms project

How to Format Bar Colors in MS Project

  • Colors are formatted in a number of forms and there is no single form for formatting all colors:
  • Nonworking time colors in the Gantt Chart are formatted in the Timescale form; double-click on the timescale.
  • Text colors are formatted in the Text Styles and Font forms, found under the Format command.
  • Gridline colors are formatted in the Gridlines form, also found under the Format command.
  • Hyperlink colors are formatted under Tools, Options…, Edit tab.
  • Timescale and Column Header colors are formatted with the system color scheme used in the Desktop, Start, Control Panel, Display option.

The Logic Lines, also known as Dependencies, Relationships, or Links, inherit their color from the predecessor’s bar color in the Gantt Chart view and may be formatted in the Network Diagram view by selecting Format, Layout….

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Related Article

Setting Up Constraints in Primavera P6 Version 8.2

Project Planning and Control Using Oracle Primavera P6 - Version 8.2 EPPM WebConstraints in Primavera P6

Constraints are applied to Activities when relationships do not provide the required result and are often a result of External Dependencies.

Typical applications of a constraint are to constrain an activity to a date for:

  • The availability of a site to commence work.
  • The supply of information by a client.
  • The required finish date of a project.

Constraints are often entered against Milestone activities to represent contract dates and may be directly related to contract items using Notebook Topics.

Constraints are covered in detail in the Constraints chapter.

Understanding Relationships

There are four types of dependencies available in Primavera P6:

  • Finish-to-Start (FS) (also known as conventional)
  • Start-to-Start (SS)
  • Start-to-Finish (SF)
  • Finish-to-Finish (FF)

Two other terms you must understand are:

  • Predecessor, an activity that controls the start or finish of another immediate subsequent activity.
  • Successor, an activity where the start or finish depends on the start or finish of another immediately preceding activity.

The following pictures show how the dependencies appear graphically in the Bar Chart and Activity Network (also known as PERT, Network Diagram and Relationship Diagram Views):

The FS (or conventional) dependency looks like this:

contraints in primavera p6

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